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Gerard Manley Hopkins

The Dublin Gothic Podcast


What ghostly traces do poets leave behind, and how do we curate their legacy? Dr Katie Mishler speaks to poet Vona Groake, Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Manchester, about the life and writing of MoLI’s resident ghost, poet and Jesuit Priest Gerard Manley Hopkins. In 1884, Hopkins became Professor of Classics at University College Dublin, and lived and worked in Newman House, now the home of MoLI, until his death of typhoid fever in 1889 at the age of 44. As an Englishman, Hopkins felt lonely and isolated in Dublin and at the University, where he worked extremely long and grueling hours. Out of this misery, however, he wrote some of his most celebrated poetry, the ‘terrible sonnets’, so-called because of their expression of pain and isolation. His poetry also expresses queer desire that is at odds with his faith. By visiting MoLI’s hidden corridors, including the Hopkins bedroom that Groake curated in the 1990s, the two discuss Hopkins’ enduring contribution to poetry, his difficult life and death in Dublin, and whether or not he haunts the halls of MoLI.

Do you enjoy reading ghost stories alone at night? Have you ever binged an entire true crime series? Or do you unwind watching horror films like The Exorcist, or reading the supernatural novels of Stephen King? The Dublin Gothic Podcast is a series looking at the intersection between art, psychology, folklore, architecture, natural history and Ireland’s urban gothic writing.

Dr Katie Mishler is an Irish Research Council Enterprise Partnership Postdoctoral Fellow (2020-2022) in collaboration with the UCD Centre for Cultural Analytics and Museum of Literature Ireland (MoLI). Her current project, Mapping Gothic Dublin: 1820-1900, researches the relationship between Dublin’s urban history and the development of Ireland’s literary gothic tradition. 

The research for this podcast is supported by Dr Mishler’s postdoctoral project Mapping Gothic Dublin: 1820-1900, funded by an Irish Research Council Enterprise Partnership Fellowship.

Producer Ian Dunphy
Sound Ian Dunphy
Music CAPE

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